The Life of Ryan: What's a King without his Castle?
My very first week on the job was all about shadowing Adam as he went to client meetings and gathering content. Let’s just say I had a lot to learn, especially about grabbing pictures. I was never a huge taker of pictures on my phone; once in awhile I would grab some candid pics of friends or some funny scenarios out in public. I wasn’t the one to take my phone out when our food got to the table and take fancy pictures with perfect lighting and awesome angles. Who would care about seeing a picture of what I’m eating? Well, as Adam said to me only a few weeks ago, “Content is king, context is his castle.”
What exactly does that mean? Well think of a king inside his castle surrounded by high walls, servants, guards, and precious gems and gold goblets. All of those things add up to him being a king. Now take him outside of his walls and place him on a desert island. Is he still a king? Sure, but a king of what? He might still be wearing his crown and carrying his scepter; looking like a king, but what does it matter if there is nobody around to rule or even acknowledge he is a king.
Think back to that picture of food I held off on taking and posting. I could take a great picture of my salad in front of me and post it but what would be the context behind it? That I’m eating?? Why would anyone care about that? Now, I’m sure there are a few who would interact with it if I posted it on social media, such as my foodie friends, but overall it’s pretty boring. Now think of a scenario where I am managing an account for a salad shop and I took that same picture and posted it on their page. It now makes much more sense because of course a salad shop is going to take pictures of their menu and get people excited about it. The king (content) now has his castle (context).
A big hurdle for me in this job was not the content. Once you have the artistic knack for what a great picture is supposed to look like, it comes naturally. What’s harder, however, is to find the right context in which to frame a post. When it comes to promoting a restaurant, the end user usually just wants to see good pictures of good food and the interaction will come. Simply posting the pictures isn’t enough though. Post a picture of a salad outside in beautiful weather and it will do amazing. The context being that delicious, healthy food goes hand in hand with gorgeous weather. Post a picture of a steaming bowl of chili with fresh bread on a frigid, blustery day and it’ll be a hit. The context being that warm, mouthwatering soul food crushes on bad weather / low temperature days.
Thinking of the proper context to frame our content is always going to be the hardest part of our job, in my opinion. What can help form the context is the overall story you want to tell that week and even the overarching story you want to convey in general for the client. Keeping that in mind will help you funnel down the specific context needed for each post. Although some context can be “on the spot”, such as weather events, current events, etc., the navigating light has to be your client’s story. And that story is what keeps the king happily in his castle